Search

UPDATED WITH FAMILY REACTION: Lodger Michael O Leary found guilty of murder of Thetford pensioner Ronald Beacham

14:42 20 June 2012

Ronald Beacham who died following an alleged assault

Ronald Beacham who died following an alleged assault

Archant

A lodger was jailed for life after being convicted of carrying out a “murderous attack” on a pensioner causing him to suffer a fatal heart attack.

Michael “Mick” O’Leary, 57, was told he must serve a minimum of 13 and half years before he is considered for release after he was found guilty of murdering Ronald Beacham, 66.

Norwich Crown Court heard how O’Leary carried out an unprovoked attack on Mr Beacham after they returned from a night out in the Ex-Servicemen’s Club in Thetford.

Mr Beacham of Ulfkell Road, Thetford, was repeatedly kicked in the head and never regained consciousness, despite being taken to Addenbrooke’s Hospital in Cambridge.

Jailing him, Judge Peter Jacobs told O’Leary that Mr Beacham had suffered a heart attack as a result of being assaulted by him: “As a result of that attack this unfortunate man, who had done nothing to you, died.

“This was a sustained attack.”

He accepted that O’Leary had been fuelled by drink and had not intended to kill Mr Beacham and told him that he would be almost 70 when he might get released from jail.

Detective Inspector Stuart Chapman said: “This was an unprovoked assault which tragically led to the death of Ronald Beacham, and I would like to offer my condolences to his family and friends.

“O’Leary appears to have become increasingly aggressive during the evening before setting upon Mr Beacham for no reason. There is no excuse for the level of violence used; within a matter of minutes O’Leary had kicked and beaten him so badly that he would not recover.

“His actions have robbed children of a grandfather and great grandfather, and an innocent man of his retirement years.”

The Family statement said: “We the family of Ron Beacham would like to express our sincere gratitude to the Norfolk Police for their professionalism in preparing, delivering and concluding the evidence needed to charge and convict the murderer responsible for taking the life of our beloved family member. He is still greatly missed by us all and the very many friends he had.

“We would like to also thank the witnesses that were called and everyone who made statements and for their help in putting him where he so obviously belongs for the term of the sentence.

“A void has been left in the hearts and lives of so many family and friends of Ron by the savage, evil and callous actions of a coward on such a gentle loving family man.

“We are pleased that justice has been served and that he will not be able to inflict the ongoing pain and suffering felt by our family on any other family.”

See tomorrow’s EDP for a full report of the case.

Other news

Yesterday, 19:03
Police believe the two suspects may have been working as part of a larger team. Picture: Ian Burt

Detectives investigating the attempted abduction of an RAF Marham officer on Wednesday said on Saturday the suspects were probably working as part of a larger team.

Yesterday, 08:00
Des Reynolds, CEO of Engage Trust. Picture: SUBMITTED

Managers of a struggling free school for challenging pupils have been told by inspectors it is unlikely to be lifted out of special measures by next year without “further prompt action to secure better behaviour”.

Yesterday, 08:00
EDP Stars of Norfolk and Waveney Awards 2015 at St Andrews Hall, Norwich. Special Recognition Award winners  the Norfolk D-Day Veterans. PHOTO BY SIMON FINLAY

Whether young, old or somewhere in between, everybody has the opportunity to contribute to our community and help make it a better place to live.

Yesterday, 07:52
Malcolm Quantrill and Colin Rands are cycling 150 miles from Mundford to Manchester in aid of St Nicholas Hospice Care.

A charity cycle ride will be a memorable journey for one fundraiser as he pedals across the country in memory of his wife.

Most Read

Yesterday, 08:00
Des Reynolds, CEO of Engage Trust. Picture: SUBMITTED

Managers of a struggling free school for challenging pupils have been told by inspectors it is unlikely to be lifted out of special measures by next year without “further prompt action to secure better behaviour”.

Read more
Thetford
Wednesday, January 12, 2011
Gangmaster Peter Wing

A rogue Norfolk gangmaster yesterday claimed he had frittered away the fortune amassed from his crime - as prosecutors sought to reclaim a share of his £1.3m in ill-gotten gains.

Read more
Yesterday, 19:03
Police believe the two suspects may have been working as part of a larger team. Picture: Ian Burt

Detectives investigating the attempted abduction of an RAF Marham officer on Wednesday said on Saturday the suspects were probably working as part of a larger team.

Read more
King's Lynn
Wed, 14:54
Have you seen this girl? Ashley Hansen went missing from RAF Feltwell on Wednesday morning. Picture: RAF Lakenheath.

A 17-year-old teenage girl who went missing from RAF Feltwell near Brandon on Wednesday morning has been found safe and well.

Read more
Friday, July 15, 2016
Police are investigating an unexplained death in Thetford.

Residents on a Thetford estate have expressed their shock after a body was discovered on a school field.

Read more
Thetford

Local Weather

Partly Cloudy

Partly Cloudy

max temp: 27°C

min temp: 17°C

HOT JOBS

Show Job Lists

Digital Edition

Image
Read the Thetford and Brandon e-edition today E-edition

Newsletter Sign Up